A beloved mascot is about to retire, as the Buffalo Bisons (Class AAA; International League) will see Celery race one final time on Wednesday.
Celery has been a big part of the Bisons’ WCC (Wings, Celery and Cheese) Race, a promotion that the team has staged since 2011. One of four mascots in that race, Celery is set to participate for the final time on Wednesday, August 30.
Over his time with the Bisons, Celery has yet to win a race, entering Wednesday’s game with a record of 0-449 record against his competitors–Atomic Wing, Blue Cheese, and Chicken Wing. Yet Celery has managed to become a fan favorite over the years, making the final race on Wednesday a highly-anticipated event around Coca-Cola Field. More from The Buffalo News:
“Well, we’re all competitors and competition makes you better,” Celery told the Buffalo News in an email interview earlier this month. “I respect Chicken Wing and Atomic, because for years, they’ve made me want to be a better racer. I’m not going to say I love their saucy demeanors, but I respect them.”
There is plenty of support for Celery, who has come to embody the spirit of the Buffalo sports fan — always trying but never quite getting that one signature win.
Bisons manager Bobby Meacham has had plenty of opportunities to work with players in slumps. He has some simple advice for Celery’s last race:
“Celery, it’s never too late to be a winner. Never. So never give up,” Meacham said. “You’re sticking with it every time, you’re putting your neck on the line and losing and losing but you never know. It just takes that one day to become a winner.”
“I think my advice would be to continue to do what you’ve done,” Bisons General Manager Mike Buczkowski said. “Give your best. Winning isn’t everything. It’s great. Everyone loves to win but sometimes there’s a lot of lessons to be learned from going out and competing.”
Wednesday’s WCC race be run following the conclusion of the Bisons’ game against the Pawtucket Red Sox. It is also part of a larger promotion for the Bisons, who are staging their Coca-Cola Field 30th anniversary celebration game.